New study from EVO Payments examines the impact of the pandemic on Europeans' shopping and payment habits.
Europeans are increasingly paying electronically, not least due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is confirmed by almost 80% of participants in the latest study "Has COVID-19 influenced European shopping habits?", commissioned by EVO Group companies in cooperation with Visa in seven European countries, including Germany, Poland, the UK, Ireland, Slovakia, Hungary and the Czech Republic, and conducted by the Poland-based research institute ARC Rynek i Opinia.
The situation in Germany
One of the most striking main characteristics that distinguishes the Germans from the other European countries surveyed is the still highly conservative attitude towards electronic payment methods. Germany is the only country in which there are more so-called "cash-oriented traditionalists" (27%) who prefer to pay with cash than "modern contactless payers" (24%) who prefer contemporary electronic payment methods. However, the survey results show that changes can already be observed in the group of "cash-oriented traditionalists". One in six say they are paying more frequently by card during the pandemic and are also generally prepared to spend more money via cashless payment methods.
Another clear differentiator for the German market is the popularity of the Girocard, which is used by as many as 93% of respondents. This makes it the second most popular means of payment in Germany after cash. Also, Germans (91%) are significantly more likely than other Europeans (63%) to make "buy now, pay later" purchases.
Germans are more likely than other Europeans to rate their standard of living as good and to be optimistic about the near future, in line with the European average. After all, 62% say that the COVID 19 pandemic has not changed their financial situation, and 26% expect it to even improve in the next 12 months – probably in the first half of 2022, according to the most frequently cited opinion.
"Our study shows that there is a clear trend towards cashless payments– even if the segment of consumers in Germany that is most strongly represented still prefers traditional payments by cash. This is where we need to start and offer simple, fast and secure payment solutions that enable a smooth checkout experience - both online for e-commerce retailers and offline for payment at the POS," explained Anna Bejaoui, General Manager at EVO Payments International.
In focus: Three major consumer segments
The new habits of shoppers can also be seen in other European countries: In terms of prevailing payment preferences and purchasing behavior, the survey reveals three major consumer segments. In addition to the "cash-oriented traditionalists" and the "modern contactless payers", the largest group, i.e. almost half of the Europeans surveyed, are so-called "payment switchers". They pay both in cash and electronically and are more likely to shop online due to the experience gained during the pandemic. The second segment (31% of respondents) are the "modern contactless payers". They prefer electronic payment methods and are convinced that digital payments will dominate in the future. The smallest segment (21% of respondents in Europe) are the cash-oriented traditionalists.
"The widespread availability of modern means of payment through EVO Group enabled Europeans to better cope with the stresses and strains of exposure and restriction during the COVID 19 pandemic. They felt they could shop safely and pay without cash, reducing the risk of contracting the virus. The convenience and security of being able to shop this way has convinced many people of the need and ease of use of these solutions. I believe that the changes in our shopping habits are irreversible. We get used to good things easily and that is why we are working hard to make modern electronic payment methods even more accessible," says Darren Wilson, President International at EVO Payments Inc. and responsible for the European market.
More information and download of the study at:
About EVO Payments International:
EVO Payments International is part of the EVO Group and a full-service payment specialist for Germany and Europe. Founded in 1989, EVO is headquartered in Atlanta, U.S.A., and is a Principal Member of Visa and Mastercard. Its international presence spans North and Latin America as well as Europe. Cologne-based, EVO Payments International GmbH is the European subsidiary of the EVO Group.
Its range of services covers all aspects of cashless payment transactions in stationary retail and eCommerce – from acquiring (card acceptance), network operation and POS terminals to payment service providing and card acceptance at ATMs (Automated Teller Machines).
About EVO Payments, Inc.:
EVO Payments, Inc. (NASDAQ: EVOP) is a leading payment technology and services provider. EVO offers an array of innovative, reliable, and secure payment solutions to merchants ranging from small and mid-size enterprises to multinational companies and organizations across the globe. As a fully integrated merchant acquirer and payment processor in over 50 markets and 150 currencies worldwide, EVO provides competitive solutions that promote business growth, increase customer loyalty, and enhance data security in the international markets it serves.